A MESSAGE FROM ESSEX POLICE
WE are raising awareness in Essex about a scam that involves companies approaching young people to become brand ambassadors.
We have been made aware of reports that teenagers are being approached by companies on social media sites asking them to help promote their clothing in exchange for discounts.
They will then ask the purchasers to cover expensive shipping costs for overpriced products – some that may never arrive.
Detective Chief Inspector Stuart Truss said: “We understand being asked to be an ambassador for any brand may be very appealing to many young people but this is a scam which will potentially involve you losing your money, data or both.
“We know many young people have aspirations to be influencers and this is something that we fully support, however, we would urge caution while online.
“Take Five while online and take steps to help Secure, Protect and Prevent. Remember, if it seems too good to be true, it probably is.
“There are many steps you can take to help combat fraud – by simply sharing these messages you are helping to educate others dearest to you.”
We received a report just this week that a 16-year-old girl from Saffron Walden was contacted online and rightly reported it.
On 20 April, another 16-year-old girl from Great Baddow fell victim of the scam before contacting Action Fraud.
We would urge people to contact Action Fraud by calling 0300 123 2040 or by visiting www.actionfraud.police.uk/reporting-fraud-and-cyber-crime.
Please find information about online safety here: https://www.essex.police.uk/advice/advice-and-information/fa/fraud/personal-fraud/online-shopping/.
You can also visit the Take Five website here: https://takefive-stopfraud.org.uk/